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Family Matters: 15 Fall Family Traditions

Saturday, September 29, 2012


Pumpkins--from picking to cooking and carving--are a big part of Fall family traditions. How about using them for races? Photo: KidoInfo

Now that it’s fall, our family welcomes the change of season and we look forward to carrying on traditions that celebrate autumn, the natural colors and the holidays including trips to favorite spots, foods made from local harvests, and activities rooted in fall.

Traditions connect our children with our personal and cultural history and form the memories they will later share with their friends and families. Stemming from religion, birthplace, seasons, or revolving around a treasured activity or possession, as parents we decide how to carry on, blend or create new traditions. They may be small or grand but it is the repetition and memories around the ritual that make them meaningful to us.

We savor, share and pass along these traditions to our children through our activities, storytelling, recipes, photographs, videos, or saved mementos.

A list of our Fall favorites

  • Apple picking at Hills Orchards
  • Make apple pie and applesauce, and our new favorite carmelized onion and apple pizza
  • Collect leaves, flatten between books and make leaf prints
  • Pick our pumpkins at Four Town Farm
  • Make our Halloween costumes, host a small Halloween gathering. We used to watch the film, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Now that the kids are older we watch Frankenstein (1931) with Boris Karloff and Dracula (1931) with Bela Lugosi.


Creating your own traditions

I love hearing what and how other families celebrate this time of year. Over the years I have asked readers to share their favorites. Here’s a sample below – feel free to borrow, incorporate or pass along.

  • We go to peace events
  • We vote together
  • Pack away summer seashell display and replace with autumn treasures; acorns, pine cones and leaves
  • Can fruits and vegetables from the garden
  • Select and tag a Christmas tree
  • Write a poem about fall
  • Create a tree from craft paper, hang in hall wall and each day a family member adds a leaf for something they are grateful for
  • Donate and bring to a needy family a complete turkey dinner (with pie)
  • During a holiday gathering, “Interview” an older relative with your child to hear his or her version of favorite traditions and celebrations
  • Create a family recipe book and encourage others from different generations to contribute

What are your favorite traditions this time of year?

Anisa Raoof is the publisher and founder of Kidoinfo, the parents' guide for Rhode Island and beyond.


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